How To Pickle Hot Peppers In 4 Easy Steps

In my garden this year peppers grew the best. I planted a variety and they all did well, but by the 2nd month I had more jalapeños than I knew what to do with! We used some, gave a few away, and they still kept growing like crazy. 


I don't know how to can properly so I pickled them instead. It sounded easy, which is a kitchen requirement for me. Plus, we eat a lot of tacos and nachos! Last night we tried them on our burgers and they were really good.

I don't do exact recipes or measuring so here is a guideline which is so easy it would be hard to screw up. 


Here is what you need:

  • Peppers. I had mostly jalapeños, but also threw in Hungarian hots and serranos.
  • Garlic, sliced. 
  • Pickling spices. I found mine near the mason jars at Walmart.
  • Apple cider or white vinegar. This is personal preference.
  • Rubber gloves.
  • Mason jars. The size doesn't matter, but make sure they are a wider mouth. 

Here's what you do:

  1. Wash and dry all the peppers.
  2. Cut off the caps and slice into 1/4" pieces. Don't worry about the seeds.
  3. Put in a small saucepan along with sliced garlic and pickling spices. Cover with apple cider or white vinegar. Bring to a boil and cook for 3 minutes. Turn off the heat and cool.
  4. Transfer to glass mason jars, including the juice, and refrigerate. 

Here is what you need to know:

  • Wear gloves the whole time. Seriously. I even wore them to pick my peppers. 
  • Pickling is supposed to cut the spice which didn't happen much in my experience. We like spicy so it's all good, but you can add some sugar before cooking to cut it down.
  • I've read these can last 3-4 months in the fridge as long as the jar is closed tight. This is my first time pickling so don't take my word for it. If you want them to last longer or be shelf-stable you'll need to can them. 

Someday I'd love to learn the art of canning, but for now this is a good way to preserve what I've grown in my first, small garden!